Thursday, November 16, 2017

Was Reliance Jio introduction a BPR exercise in India ?

Business Process Reengineering is defined as the fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of business processes to achieve dramatic improvements in critical measures of performance such as cost, quality, service and speed.(Hammer and Champy, 1993)
One of the big questions being asked these days is whether the recent introduction and success of Reliance Jio telecom was indeed a great re-engineering exercise.

The introduction of Reliance Jio was no doubt catastrophic, it resulted in loss of almost 75,000 jobs in the telecom industry and loss of business for the industry worth more than $700 billion, almost INR 50 lakh crores. (Malayala Manorama, 16 Nov, 2017) In spite of this huge economic and social shakeup of the telecom industry, it did bring benefits to the customer in terms of better technological infrastructure, advanced technology, lower costs, better service, overall resulting in delivering -higher value for the customers in the country.

Here are a few points being listed to support my argument that Reliance Jio qualifies to be termed as a very successful re-engineering exercise.

1. Fundamental rethinking - for telecom calls all this while we have been paying cash on a minute or second basis depending on whether the calls were local or across states inside a country. Reliance Jio has transformed that thinking, by reaffirming time and again that telecom calls within an area or within geographical boundaries within a country can indeed be FREE ..

2. Radical redesign - by making use of the latest technological developments like fibre optics cables to communicate using optics technology through cables laid on land and under the sea, the quantum of data that could be communicated has increased manifold.

3. Introduction of Advanced Modern Technology / methods : Adopting the latest 4G technology, though the technology was very nascent in the country. 4G mobile phones are offered at cheap rates. The advanced 4G technology has been implemented across the country much earlier than it has been accepted in many of the advanced nations of the world, it speaks enough of the performance aspects of BPR.

4. Effective Customer Service Network : Reliance Jio had already set up the needed sales and customer service networks through Reliance Digital stores and through a wide network of service and marketing personnel across the country, the push to reach the customers physically and through the media was very evident right from day one.

5. Promise of provision of auxilliary, related value added services : It gave great expectations in the customer by promising not only the needed bandwidth, fibre optics infrastructure and software functionality, it kept telling the public through the media about its extra spare capacity in its fibre optics cables and intention to start more high speed services like Broadband Internet and DTH services. This gave the reassurance to the customers that Reliance Jio was seriously intent on serving the customer with heavy investments in the country.

Having invested heavily in infrastructure there was no option to Reliance Jio but to give superior service to the customers and capture the market. The customers knew this and embraced Reliance Jio with open hands.

6. No negativity in actions and words : Reliance Jio never gave any negative news about how competitors were getting impacted by its presence in the market, but kept communicating to the people the benefits and privileges the customers would be entitled if Reliance Jio was accepted  as the primary communications network. This was a very positive move from Reliance Jio which endeared it to the masses.

6. Introduction of Low cost tariff plans : After the almost 9 months free usage period to woo customers, the release of new tariff plans to suit the rural customers pockets, even going down to about Rs 149 for a 30 day talk plan with minimal data, was very reassuring to the telecom subscribers of the country.

7. End to exploitation of customers : The constant thoughts within the customers/ minds on how all the telecom companies in the past were exploiting the customers with high and exhorbitant charges and poor service was at the back of the minds of the customers and they wanted to get released from this setback for ever.

8. Discounting future customer exploitation : Some of the customers did have the feeling and fears that Reliance Jio would give low charge plans initially to garner more subscribers and then increase the charges later on, thus virtually imprisoning customers to its networks were totally belied when Reliance Jio released its final tariff plans a month back, which were very reasonable.

9.  Providing great customer value : Reliance Jio never took up any negative advertising but instead only concentrated on providing great value to its customers. Customers across the country appreciated this Jio tactic very much with more Jio sims on their phones and porting existing numbers from other telecom service providers to Reliance Jio network.

10. Rewriting global telecom market cost parameters : Reliance Jio rewrote the market for voice calling in the world by making it totally free within the country and to be the first country in the world to offer such an offering.

11. Increased customer confidence : Overall customers were assured of the best technology, best customer service, affordable costs, FREE calling and low cost huge data usage of upto 1GB daily (and low speed thenceforth for the next few hours of the day till 2AM when plans rolled back to the initial stage), all added to the customers confidence in the company and its offering to the Indian public.

Having invested almost $33 billion in the most advanced Indian telecom network in India (not challenged yet by any telecom company in the any other part of the world, even in China or US), Reliance Jio has really set a one time total disruption of the telecom industry in India and the world.

Global telecom majors are now scared to invest in the country and the existing global players are looking for alliances and partnerships to stay afloat in India. The Indian customers do not need any more confidence building measures from Reliance Jio to assure them and are more than convinced that Reliance Jio is going to stay in the Indian market and will serve them well in the coming years.

To ensure Reliance Jio does not have a total monopoly in the telecom and data transmission markets, these foreign companies are kept surviving by the Indian public with good revenues and customer base so as not to have them exit the country.

The minimum time and dexterity with which this one-time technological disruption and radical change delivering high value to the customer at the lowest cost has been brought about in the smoothest way and shortest time period, indeed leaves no doubt in the minds of the Indian public that Reliance Jio introduction and disruption of the telecom market in India is a perfect example of Business Process Re-engineering at its best ..

Lets see whether the next BPR exercise in the country would come from within or would be implemented by an MNC .. This technological and commercial disruption of the telecom industry has been the biggest in the history of Independent India and for that matter anywhere in the world, and that adds more importance and weight to this exercise !

George Easaw

Ref : 1. Hammer, Micheal and James Champy, Re-engineering the Corporation - A manifesto for Business Revolution, Collins Business Essentials, 1993.

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Lessons from India's demonetisation for other countries of the world ..

I was reading the article by Prof Bhaskar Chakravarthi of Tufts Business School , Harvsrd Business Review, November 2017 on the lessons of India's demonetisation exercise for the rest of the countries of the world.

The lessons as highlighted by Prof Bhaskar made interesting reading. The underflow of the paper was the intellectual hollowness of the whole process. The fact that a very important economic decision was taken by the Indian Prime Minister, relatively less experienced, who had manipulated the Indian population through his provocative election speeches, had literally misfired, did harm the economy in great measure.

The damages to the economy were great and very disastrous. Loss of almost 2 million jobs and loss of economic output in the country of almost INR 4.5 lakh crores resulting in the drop of Indian GDP growth to 5.9% in the past four quarters (not forgetting additional expenses of almost INR 30,000 crores, $4.5 billion, for the demonetisation exercise) has been catastrophic and devastating  to the economy.

The unintelligent acts of this person ..
At first though the objective of demonetisation exercise as claimed by Mr Narendra Modi was to eradicate black money and corruption, it floundered. Almost 99% of the Rupees 15.44 lakh crores ($239 billion) of demonetised notes in circulation came back into the banks and the whole exercise backfired. To escape from the blame of an unplanned, poorly executed move and to deflect popular discontent on such a floundering economic step, the objective of the demonetisation exercise was immediately changed to help bring a digital cashless economy in India. To add insult to injury, the experience of the past three quarters show GDP growth declined.

People silently endured the sufferings and hardships.

Lesson One : Choose the economic experts of the country carefully. Sidelining the top global economic experts for less educated and less experienced roadside peddlers, did damage the economy to a great extent.

Lesson Two : Get to understand and assess the economic fundamentals and the monetary policy of the country correctly. If in doubt, check with economic experts how global economy works and how national economy in limked with the international economy.

Lesson Three : Understand natural human behaviour, faced with a crisis of losing their hard earned money, legal or illegal, it is human reaction to devise innovative ways to ensure that the money is not wasted and gets deposited in different accounts in the banks.

What a great loss of manpower standing in queues
Lesson Four : Promoting the objective of a Unified Digital Payment Interface in the country at the cost of great pain, suffering and economic hardships of the people by going to the extent of even withdrawing 86% of the currency in circulation in not an objective worth the pain and hardships of the people. More worthier objectives should have been put forward.

Hope the other nations of the world would learn from the Indian economic blunder carried out on November 8, 2017. If not for any benefits to the host country, let this exercise have some global lessons for the other countries of the world on avoiding economic blunders.

Did India really need demonetisation, was demonetisation implemented after thoughtful deliberations, has this step helped black money hoarders convert their black money to white with government support are all questions the nation and the world are waiting for an answer ..

george.. 

Monday, November 06, 2017

Comparing Amazon Echo and Google Home Personal Assistants

 
" Alexa, what is the news ? " 
Let me introduce to my friends the two AI assisted (virtual) Personal Assistants in the market, Amazon Echo and Google Home. 

Two days back, I got the AI powered Amazon Echo Dot, having the cloud based service through the Amazon Personal Assistant Alexa.

Amazon Echo dot, INR 3150, www.amazon.in
Slowly getting used to having a personal (virtual) assistant. The virtual personal  assistant, besides doing a lot of information related chores, can help simplify our digital lives. Amazon Personal Assistant, as explained is known by a very popular name, Alexa. Echo is the hardware and Alexa is the software ..

https://beebom.com/best-alexa-commands-for-amazon-echo/

Amazon Echo Dot, has been in the market for more than 2 years and accesses the Amazon Web Services (AWS) through a wi-fi connection while the Google Home is the new entrant released just last year and has access to the vast Google knowledge repository and also great services like Youtube .. (which is a big shortcoming for Amazon) ..

Click here to know more about the best Alexa skills and commands..

For information gathering and retrieval tasks, Google Home is more powerful but for tasks like shopping, networking with other devices using IoT Amazon Echo has the upper edge. 

A hot battle is on, whichever is better, will dominate the AI assisted personal chores segment in the coming days. The yet undefined roles of the Personal Assistant, as the field is still in the evolutionary stage, is also a clear indication of the tech future assisted by artificial intelligence, which is to come to our homes and distort, disturb or assist our personal online lives..

Google Home about INR 10,000 on ebay ..
I am still experimenting with Alexa, like playing radio, getting the latest news, asking time, date, greetings, info query from Wikipedia, info on places, people, events, objects etc ..

In the next few days and weeks, I will be able to explore the additional features of Amazon Echo like IoT by working on integrating more home devices like TV, lighting, Audio systems etc to the Amazon Echo. I find AI capabilities in Echo and Google Home limited, but in the growth phase.

Echo is simple to setup and use ...
As of now as regards networking and reach, Amazon Echo is much more capable than Google Home. Google Home, other than information, has a long long, long way to go to catch up with Amazon echo. In the coming days, am sure more AI related apps would be released on Amazon Echo and on Google Home too.

Cost wise, in Bangalore, Amazon Echo dot comes at INR 3150 while Google Home mini costs almost INR 8000.

Google Home mini, INR 8000 on ebay
Click here for a good comparison of Amazon Echo and Google Home..

Here is a Techcrunch comparison of Alexa, Google Siri and Sonos .. 

While Google and Tesla / Toyota / Ford are fighting it out on who will dominate the driverless electric car market, this fight between Amazon and Google is set to get  more personal ..

George..

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Malankara Orthodox Church in deep crisis ..

ഓർത്തഡോൿസ്  സഭ  വലിയ പ്രതിസന്ധിയിൽ.... കാവൽക്കാരൻ തന്നെ വിളവ് കക്കുന്ന നില വന്നിരിക്കുന്നു 

Let not the efforts of St. Thomas go in vain ..
മലങ്കര സഭയിൽ മെത്രാപ്പോലീത്തമാർ ചിലർ  ദൈവവിളിയില്ലാത്തവരാണോ ? 

സാമ്പത്തിക ഇടപാടുകളിൽ സത്യസന്ധത ഇല്ലാത്തവരാണോ ? 
സഭയോടും വിശ്വാസികളോടും നീതി പുലർത്തുന്നവരാണോ.? നിങ്ങൾ എല്ലാവരും സഭാ മക്കൾ ഒന്നു ശ്രധിക്കുക....

അടുത്ത കാലത്തു ഓർത്തഡോക്സ്‌ സഭയിലെ മെത്രാമാർ കുറെ കേസ്കളിൽ ആരോപണ വിധേയരായിട്ടുണ്ട്. യാക്കോബായ പക്ഷത്തുള്ള കുറച്ചു മെത്രാന്മാർ ഓർത്തഡോക്സ്‌ മെത്രാന്മാരെക്കാൾ  മെച്ചപ്പെട്ടവർ ആണെന്ന് പോലും ജനങ്ങൾക്കു തോന്നി തുടങ്ങി. 

 മലങ്കരയിലെ വിവിധ  ഭദ്രാസനങ്ങൾ ഭരിക്കുന്ന തിരുമേനിമാർ  സത്യസന്ധത ഇല്ലാതെ വിശ്വാസികളേയും സഭയെയും കബളിപ്പിക്ക്കുന്നു.  മെത്രാന്മാർ സ്വന്തം കാര്യം മാത്രം നോക്കുന്നവരായി അടുത്തിടെ  മാറിയില്ലേ.  പ. ബാവാ തിരുമേനിക്ക് യാതൊരു നിയന്ത്രണം ഇല്ലാത്ത അവസ്ഥ സംജാതമായിരിക്കുന്നു. ഓരോ ഭദ്രസന മെത്രാനും അവരുടെ ഭദ്രാസനത്തിലെ വൈദികരും തോന്നുന്നപോലെ പ്രവർത്തിക്കുന്നു.  ഈ പോക്ക് മലങ്കര സഭെയ് നാശത്തിലേക്കു തള്ളി വിടുകയാണ്.  നാശം തുടങ്ങിക്കഴിഞ്ഞു എന്ന് തന്നെ പറയാം. റിയൽ എസ്റ്റേറ്റ്  ബിസിനസ്‌ വരെ താല്പര്യം രഹസ്യമായി ഉള്ള മെത്രാ പ്പോലീത്തമാർ  രണ്ടു വിഭാഗത്തിലും ഉണ്ടെന്നുള്ളത്   പരസ്യമായ രഹസ്യമാണ്.

സഭാമക്കൾ പറയുന്ന കാര്യങ്ങൾ തെളിവുകൾ സഹിതം നിരത്തിയാൽ മെത്രാന്മാർ വല്ലാത്ത  കഷ്ടത്തിലാകും. സംഗതികൾ ഗൗരവം ഉള്ളതാണെങ്കിലും ഇപ്പോഴും വിശ്വസികുളുടെ വീടു് നിരങ്ങി വിദേശത്തും സ്വദേശത്തും മെത്രാന്മാർ കണക്കില്ലാതെ പണം പിരിക്കുന്നു.  ഈ പിരിക്കുന്ന രൂപ മൊത്തം സ്വന്തം വീട്ടുകാർക്ക് കൊടുക്കുന്നു. ആർക്കും കുറ്റം പറയാൻ സാധ്യമല്ല കാരണം പിരിക്കുന്ന രൂപക്ക് കണക്കില്ല. വിശ്വാസികൾ ആണ് ഇതു് നയന്ത്രിക്കേണ്ടത്. പണം വെറുതെ വൈദികർക്കും തിരുമേനിമാർക്കും കണക്കില്ലാതെ കൊടുക്കരുത്. 

അടുത്ത കാലത്തു സഭയിൽ  പരാതികൾ അഥവാ ആക്ഷേപങ്ങൾ കേട്ടത് തിരുവനന്തപുരം കേസ് അറിഞ്ഞത്  സഭയിലെ പ്രമുഖൻ നടിക്കുന്ന സ്വഭാവം ഇല്ലാത്ത ഒരു  വ്യക്തിയെ ഉപയോഗിച്ച് തിരുമേനി  നടത്തുന്ന ഭൂമി കൈമാറ്റങ്ങളും കോടികളുടെ അട്ടിമറിയും. അമേരിക്കയിൽ പെണ്ണ് കേസിൽ പെട്ട ഒരു മെത്രാന് പുതിയ ഭദ്രസനം ഭരിക്കാൻ  നൽകിയത്.
Malankara Orthodox Church HQ, Devalokam, Kottayam
കർണാടകയിൽ ഒരു മെത്രാന്റെയ്‌ സഹോദര പുത്രിക്ക്  മെഡിക്കൽ അഡ്മിഷൺ വാങ്ങാൻ ബാംഗ്ലൂർ ആസ്ഥാനത്തു നിന്നും ഒരു കോടി രൂപയുടെ കാപിറ്റേഷൻ ഫീസ് കൊടുത്തത് ഒപ്പംകേട്ടത് അതേ മെത്രാന്റെയ്‌  സഹോദരന് പുതിയ വീടു് വയ്ക്കാൻ ഒരു വലിയ തുക തിരുമേനി  വിദേശത്ത് നിന്നും സ്വദേശത്തു നിന്നുംസഭാ മക്കളെ  പിഴിഞ്ഞ്  വാങ്ങിയതിൽ മഹാമനസ്കതയുടെ സ്വാർത്ഥ  സംഭാവന. 

വാസ്തവം എന്തെന്ന് അറിയില്ല കാലം ചെയ്ത മലബാറിലെ തിരുമേനി പണം ധാരാളം കണക്കുകൾ സൂക്ഷിക്കാതെ ചിലവാക്കി എന്നുള്ള ആരോപണം. മലബാറിൽ കുറേ വൈദികർക്ക് കണക്കിൽപ്പെടാത്ത രൂപയുടെ വീതം കിട്ടാത്ത പരാതികൾ. 

ദേവലോകത്തെ കാര്യങ്ങൾ പറയുകയേ വേണ്ട. സഭാ കേസ് എന്ന് പറഞ്ഞു കണക്കില്ലാതെ ബാവാ തിരുമേനിയുടെ കൈയിൽ നിന്നും എറണാകുളം ജില്ലയിൽ ഒന്നു രണ്ടു മെത്രാന്മാർ വൻതുക  രൂപ തിരിമറി നടത്തുന്നു.  ഈ വലിയ  തുകയിൽ കുടുതലും പരുമലയിൽ നിന്നും കിട്ടുന്ന കണക്കില്ലാത്ത നേർച്ച ക്യാഷ് എന്നാണ് കേട്ടറിവ്. ഇനിയും മെത്രാൻ കഥകൾ കോടികളുടെ തിരിമറി  പുറത്തു വരാനിരിക്കുന്നു. 

ഇന്നു് സഭയിൽ കേട്ടുകേൾവി ഇല്ലാത്ത അന്യായങ്ങൾ പലതും ആണ് സംഭവിക്കുന്നത്. 

തിരുമേനിമാരോടു സഭാമക്കൾക്കു ആർക്കും  വ്യക്തിപരമായി ശത്രുത ഇല്ല.  യഥാർത്ഥത്തിൽ തിരുമേനിമാർ  തെറ്റായ കാര്യങ്ങൾക്ക് വശംവദരാകുമ്പോൾ സഭയിലെ  വൈദികർ തീരെയും അനുസരണ ഇല്ലാത്തവരാകും.  നേതൃത്വം മോശമായാൽ  സഭ മൊത്തം നശിക്കാനിടയാകും. സഭയിലെ ആത്മീയ മക്കൾ പണം മെത്രാന്മാർക്കും വൈദികർക്കും നൽകുമ്പോൾ കുറച്ചു കൂടുതൽ  ശ്രദ്ധിക്കണം. നല്ല പ്രവർത്തികൾക്ക് രൂപ സംഭാവന കൊടുക്കണം,  പിരിച്ചു കിട്ടുന്നത് ശരിയായ പദ്ധതികൾക്ക്  ഉപയോഗിക്കുന്ന നടപടി ക്രമം സഭയിൽ തീർച്ചയായും ഉണ്ടാകണം. 

ഇപ്പോൾ സഭയിൽ നടക്കുന്ന  വൃത്തികെട്ട സാമ്പത്തിക തിരിമറികൾ മെത്രാന്മാർ എന്നല്ല വൈദികർ തുടങ്ങി അത്മായക്കാർ  എല്ലാവരും നിർത്തണം. 

 കുറ്റങ്ങൾ  പ്രവർത്തിക്കാതെ, ദൈവാശ്രയ ബോധത്തോടെ, ദൈവസ്നേഹത്തോടെ, അധികാരം സ്നേഹപൂർവ്വമായ നേതൃത്വം നൽകുന്നതിനാണെന്ന് അഭി. തിരുമേനിമാർ തിരിച്ചറിഞ്ഞ് പ്രവർത്തിക്കാൻ സാധിക്കട്ടെ.

ഇവിടെ  വ്യക്തികളല്ല വലുത് സഭയാണ്.  സഭയുടെ കൊമ്പാണ് എന്നും എപ്പോഴും  ഉയർത്തപ്പെടേണ്ടത്.

 ഇനിയും സാമ്പത്തിക തിരിമറികൾ നിർത്തി, നിലവാരമില്ലാത്ത തരം താണ പ്രവർത്തികൾ മെത്രാന്മാർ  എന്നത്തേക്കുമായി നിർത്തി നവീന കാലത്തിന്റെ സത്യസന്ധതയുടെ  വെല്ലുവിളി ഏറ്റെടുക്കുമെന്ന് പ്രതീക്ഷിക്കുന്നു. ദൈവം നമ്മുടെ സഭയെ അനുഗ്രഹിക്കട്ടെ.

വിവരശേഖരണം :
കോരുത് പാപ്പച്ചൻ 
മങ്ങാട്ട് മേലെ പറമ്പിൽ 
ചെങ്ങന്നുർ.

(forwarded as received)

വിശ്വാസികളെ വിശ്വാസ വഞ്ചന ചെയ്തു, രണ്ടായിരം  വർഷത്തെ വിശ്വാസ പാരമ്പര്യം കളഞ്ഞുകുളിക്കാൻ ഈ കഴിവും വിവരവുമില്ലാത്ത മേല്പട്ടക്കാരെ നമുക്ക് വേണോ ?  ദൈവഭയം ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നെങ്കിൽ,  നല്ല കുടുംബങ്ങളിൽനിന്നു വന്നിരുന്നെങ്കിൽ  ഇവർ ഈ വിശ്വാസവഞ്ചനക്കു മുതിരുമായിരുന്നോ ??

Click here for my earlier writing on defrocking these deviant bishops .. .

George Easaw


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Advice from the oncologist, Dr Thomas Varghese

When Dr Thomas Varghese trained at the Tata Memorial Cancer hospital in Mumbai and developer of the Varghese technique in cancer surgery, started his practice from Kochi, Kerala, little did the people of Kerala know about him.

Having proved himself in a short time to be a great trained oncologist surgeon from Kochi, he gives valuable advice to people on how to prevent cancer. 

According to Dr Thomas, urbanisation and food intake are the greatest threat mankind is facing which limits his working life and his restful life out of office hours. 

Dr. Varghese says that of all human food intake, white sugar, salt, milk, maida (American flour) and white polished rice are the greatest reasons for cancer of different kinds, not forgetting redmeat. Salted foods, snacks are great promoters of cancer in human beings. Not taking more food and having more frequent and less food intake, not snacks or packaged food, can also ensure that we lead healthy lives. Avoiding processed and packaged food can also be a positive step to a healthy life.

Urbanisation has resulted in humans leading a very subdued and less active life (with no exercises). This also found to be another great contributor to cancer. Proper walking and other body relaxation and stretching exercises is a good antidote to the early onset of cancer.

Environmental pollution which includes air and water pollution, is the modern day cancer agent. From his vast experience at Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital in Mumbai, Dr Thomas has seen many instances of cancer of the liver and the kidneys among people living on the banks of Ganges and Yamuna river. This talks of how unwarranted pollution of two famous and large rivers in India has been a health risk to the people staying on the banks of these two rivers.

Having listened to many of Dr Thomas' speeches, it is opined that more of vegetables, fruits, fibrous foods and curds with enough of fish (with easily digestible fats) with enough opportunities for lots of exercises for the body and the mind, including yoga, can ensure that we keep cancer at bay.

George.

The Malankara Titans .

Friday, October 27, 2017

The 7 Rs of Process Innovation

Steven Shapiro's 7Rs of Process Innovation ..

Rethink - fundamental rethinking of the process
Reconfigure
Resequence
Relocate
Reduce
Reassign
Retool

Future head transplant by Italian surgeon Dr Sergio Canavero ..

At first I thought this was an April Fool's joke being played on the people of the world, but later I realised it is really a surgeon trying to convince the world of the success of such a surgical process from his limited knowledge and exposure ..

A 36 hour mammoth head transplant surgery involving 150 surgeons in Harbin Medical University in North China is what Dr Sergio Canavero is planning by end 2017 or early 2018 (click here for the news from Guardian) to fix the healthy body of a brain dead person to the head of a quadraplegic patient.(the medical term for the procedure is cerebrosomatic anastomosis)

By June 2015, Dr. Canavero was recruiting surgeons to participate in the procedure, which will be conducted on Valery Spiridinov, a 31-year-old Russian man with Werdnig-Hoffman disease, a rare genetic condition that prevents his muscles from growing. .. the Observer website ..

There is a Newsweek report of the first patient of Dr. Sergio being a Chinese patient. Needs confirmation.

Joining just 10 to 20% of the millions of nerves passing through the spine to the different parts of the body is what Dr Sergio says makes his intention of doing a successful head transplantation very easy.. But by doing a part shoddy work on a human patient, is Dr Sergio inviting to give birth to Frankensteins on planet earth ?

Click here for the TED talk by Dr Sergio ..

His idea sounds very plain and lacks the needed academic and professional medical rigour and looks like he believes human physiology, especially the nervous system is a simple as that of rats ..

Can the civilised world get up and sensitise the people of the world as to the threat this experiment would pose to humanity as it would be akin to releasing a genie out of the bottle ?? Can there be a consensus among the medical fraternity of the necessity and ethical position regarding this head transplant ?

george..

Monday, October 23, 2017

Privilege - the bait that weakens oneself ...

What are privileges ? Oxford dictionary defines privilege as a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group. For example, ‘education is a right, not a privilege’

When we do not make use of privileges intelligently and use it as a favour for a select few in society, privileges can be like a millstone tied around your neck.

Click here for the video explaining this concept pretty well with a common example from society. The video explains clearly the concept of privileges.

The best example to explain the bad effects of privileges is to take examples from well-to-do rich influential families. Why do children from rich privileged, influential families lick the dust when it comes to open competition ?

Rich, influential parents, out of ignorance and pride, shower more and more comforts and privileges on their children thinking it would take them ahead in life, only to find their less than average kids fail in life. They contemplate that riches, influence, power etc can help their kids, when actually it only spoils them !

The same logic applies to rich countries too. US and Europe are fighting hard to keep off competition to it's spoilt children, not knowing that they are just waiting to see their children being wiped out of contention soon .. 

Share your wealth and riches with the less fortunate. Better still, devote your life for the upliftment of society, not for your personal benefit and comfort. 

Why is Tata Son's surviving even after 150 years of existence ? Pure reason is philanthropy .. 70% of Tata Son's profits go for philanthropy, like cancer care, orphanages, education, research and so on. 

How is the Travancore royal family still finding itself respected and manage to be the richest royal family in the world (though its riches are lying in the vaults of the Sri Padmanabha swamy temple in Trivandrum, a trillion dollars to say the least) !! They are roughly 150x the British royals .. the sole reason is philanthropy !!

The Travancore royals were intelligent enough and quick to realise that all the riches showered on them actually belonged to the society .. They felt it their responsibility to give back to society and they have been doing it for more than three centuries.

A true inviolable truth .. Privileges are intentional baits to spoil you. Accept the truth and make peace with the less privileged, share and be equals ..

George ..  

Friday, October 20, 2017

Why and How of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) .. ??

We have very frequently come across the term Standard Operating Procedure. What exactly does this mean ? Should we try to follow the SOP religiously, will it help us, how can it reduce defects, how does it improve the final output, does it finally lead to better quality, these are some of the questions that are constantly in the minds of production managers and top decision makers in organisations.

Let us see whether they can be answered by a discussion on SOPs.

Standard Operating Procedure is a written procedure prescribed for repetitive use as a practice, in accordance with agreed upon specifications aimed at obtaining a desired outcome. www.businessdictionary.com
A standard operating procedure, or SOP, is a set of step-by-step instructions compiled by an organization to help workers carry out complex routine operations. SOPs aim to achieve efficiency, quality output and uniformity of performance, while reducing miscommunication and failure to comply with industry regulations. - www.wikipedia.org
A neat template to implement SOP in the organisation
An SOP provides consistency, predictability and ensures consistency of outcome, in other words, it reduces the variability of the output. It does not require constant supervision, facilitates training for the employees to be better at the jobs they are good at. It also enables cross-training of the employees at different tasks by having very detailed and definite instructions neatly laid down enabling work to be done with great consistency and less variability.. 

I usually teach about Standard Operating Procedure by playing a game in the class. It is called the paper folding game.


Click here for the presentation on the Paper Folding game.

This game helps the students to understand the importance of having a formally accepted set of instructions to do any task the way it is done, which reduces the variability and thus improves the quality of the task. More clearer and detailed the SOP, better is the compliance and less the variability.
Lesser the variability means better quality and lower costs of non-compliance ..

Whenever there are repetitive operations organisations need to do on a regular basis, the only way to do it consistently and uniformly do it is by insisting on Standard Operating Procedures to be implemented and adopted.  

The other advantage of having an SOP is that the employees can come up with improvements over the existing SOP if it improves the quality.  An SOP can thus challenge the employees to constantly look to improving the quality of their work and the work output, as also to look at reducing the use of inputs and ensure better compliance.

george..

Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to make your phone faster

Japanese Management principles rely on Lean Operations to a great extent. Standard Operating Procedure forms a great part of the discipline anyone needs to follow to ease up your work, make it smarter, efficient and less cumbersome. 

In this day of innumerable smartphone apps available for download and cheap data, we tend to use more apps and download more data. More frequently than not, most of our smartphone systems software do not have auto cleansing features. It does not prompt us to

1. move apps from the phone memory to the SD card
2. delete cache data and other data stored in phone memory to clean the phone's internal memory so that the phone will be fast to use.

Here is an SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) while downloading apps to our smartphone to keep the phone fast and healthy..

- Beginning of document -

Smartphone Cleaning and Sysem Updation Standard Operating Procedure (SOP)
SOP No.: A1
Department / Organisation : Personal / home
Country of Origin : India
Date prepared : 20 Oct 2017

Objective : To make smartphones / tabs work faster
Scope : To cover all smartphones and tabs work faster
Smartphone Operating System - Android
Recommended version - Android 5.1.1

Procedure :

     A) While downloading new Apps
        1. Go to Google store
        2. Search for the desired app from the most secure source
        3. Download the app
        4. Go to Settings,  -> App management, -> (downloaded) app, -> Move storage to SD card

     B) Weekly once, to clean up your phone
        a. Go to Settings, App Management, 
        b. click on apps taking more than 50 Mb of storage and
        c. ensure app storage is on SD card and
        d. data is deleted
        e. Reboot the phone

    C) Monthly Once, system updates
        a) go to Settings -> Phone -> System updates -> click on OK
        b) after system updates (from 10- 20 minutes), system will automatically roboot with updated features and better speed

Date prepared : 20 Oct 2017
Date of next revision : 19 Oct 2018
Originator Name / Designation / Signature : George Easaw, Author and Professor, -sign-
Approver Name / Designation / Signature : George Easaw, Author and Professor, -sign-
Version no : 1.0.0,
Previous version - nil

- End of document -

Being a heavy user on the phone for almost 50% of my waking life, I find my Lenovo Octacore, 2 GB RAM, 16 GB SD memory smartphone following this SOP gives me true value for money !!


george..

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Some more aspects of BPR ..




These slides give some very vital aspects of BPR. It helps us to demystify the common misconceptions of BPR in the minds of the public and organisations.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Tiangong 1 coming crashing from space ..

The 8.5T Tiangong I Chinese space station launched in 2011 after making 34,479 orbits around earth is coming on a crash visit (actually crashing) to earth between Oct '17 and April '18. Now it is at an altitude of 300 km ..

Tiangong 2 launched in 2016 is also in orbit. 

Compare this with the 77T US Skylab launched in 1979 and the 20T Salyut 7 launched in 1991.. Both of them have crashed to earth. 

George..

What the future beholds !!

Click here for the video link.  An excellent video which tells us what future technology beholds for humanity, especially the developed and developing world.

At the outset, let me say, the speaker Vivek Wadhwa is opposed to Chinese and Chinese manufacturing. He seems to be ridiculing Chinese manufacturing prowess in this video, but let us realise that it is Chinese interference in solar PV module manufacturing that brought down solar energy to INR rs. 2.9 per unit in Dubai, world's cheapest. 

As the speaker says 3D printers will be very powerful in the coming years. Wait till Chinese enter the 3D printer market, they will control the whole world then.. 

Banks and financial institutions will still be there, but may not be mainstream..

Growing organic foods in vertical farms on buildings etc is an interesting development, have to wait and watch how far it is practical ..

Overall, very many powerful, potential ideas were discussed .. 👌👌

BTW, recycling, waste management and environment concerns were not discussed..  😟😟

George .. 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Defrocking Orthodox bishops as punishment ..

The delinquent trio of Malankara Orthodox Church..
Issues for Orthodox Church because of unruly, uncultured, indisciplined young bishops lacking devotion, commitment and spirituality

Do we as responsible people imbibe the values of Christ, the poor shepherd boy from Galilee in our lives and try to lead a simple and truthful, spiritual life, which the youngsters in the church look upto ?

Our priests elected to be bishops are supposed to lead pious lives, and always give a helping hand to the needy and downtrodden in the society. What we see is our young bishops, mainly the ineligible ones, are publicly flaying their failings and shortcomings. Here are three of them who need to be reined and prevented from causing more damage to the society and the community.

1. The 50 year old Yulios, Ahmedabad bishop who publicly abused Bawa Tirumeni, three years back and got away easily. He had behaved rudely with the earlier Catholicos too and is recognised as a habitual offender among the priests.

2. The case of the 50 year old Eusebius from South West US who got into sex case is very shameful and baffling too. He was banished from US, to protect the image of our church and is fighting it in Kerala now. 

3. To add fuel to fire, the skeletons keep dropping from the shelves. Gabriel from Trivandrum, 68 years, finds his confidantes are all criminals sharing lot of traits with him. One of these rowdies or goondas, Babu Parayil, sadly also a member of the Managing Committee of the church, was arrested two days back in Bangalore on charges of planning to murder a business associate Ganesh in a failed partnership deal and is currently cooling his heels in the Parappana Agrahaara jail in Bangalore. Sadly Gabriel is going all out, using his influence to get his close buddy and criminal Babu on bail !!

Is it because,  
1. they were misfits for the spiritual responsibility bestowed on them that expected too much sacrifice from them ?  
2. their selection processes were much flawed and lacked a spirit of sacrifice and spiritualism ? 
3. their selections were based on extraneous factors including cheap church politics ?  
4. earlier when the age was 55 to become bishops, the priests attained a level of wisdom and understanding, could accommodate differing views and were above selfish considerations. The case is just reverse now, most of the new youngsters are after money, riches, comfort and clandestinely even have shareholdings in believer's business establishments. How can such people care for the common believer ?
Let us not forget all this is being done in the garb of serving that poor shepherd boy. How far have evil, deceit, double-dealing, chicanery, fraud and treachery been assimilated by our young high priests. How unintelligent of them to think they would never be exposed and the believers have given them the unassailable right to fool the believers the whole life ?

We need to elect bishops with some basic level of intelligence too.. We need to think seriously about this, do a complete overhaul of the Bishop election / elevation process, before they bring more damage to the two millennia old traditional Malankara Orthodox Church, part of the Oriental Orthodox fraternity.

Why not keep such unintelligent, unruly priests lacking the spiritual touch away from negatively influencing the two million followers of Malankara Orthodox Church the world over, especially the youngsters ? When the Supreme Court of India recognises the independent stand of the church not wavering from the 2 millennia old ancient native customs and democratic traditions of the church, we need to be more open, more transparent and more unforgiving of such self-centred, self-serving, ego-centric personalities in the church.

To be a good model for the youngsters, why not the church after suitable deliberations and decision making, defrock them as a very mild punishment ?

If we don't pluck away such aberrations at the beginning itself, it can lead to irreparable damages to the church. These young bishops, deeply pained to say, are not leading by example. They are great failures as leaders. They are not role models for the younger generation and are sure to bring great disaster and damage to the community and society..

It is only when the leaders have humility they become successful. Humility is thus the beginning of intelligence and service. 

George..

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Lessons from ERP - successes and failures ..

We all have heard success stories of enterprise resource planning (ERP) (click for presentation) software in different organisations. But a great number of ERP installations fail. Gartner mentions that about 75% of all ERP implementations fail .. Why is it that these implementations fail, even after committing so much of human resources, material resources, money, time etc to the project. 

No study of ERP systems is complete unless we make an earnest attempt to understand why ERP systems fail.

Though ERP systems are just a collection of basic RDBMS software that connects all the departments in an organisation to help in the smooth functioning of the organisation, maintain integrity of data, enable secure access of this centralised data, with a smooth software interface connecting the user, the customer, the server storing the centralised data, the implementation, upkeep and maintenance of the ERP system is very challenging.

I had my first experience on RDBMSs with Ingres working  on mini computers, then came Unisys, ( both at Goa Engineering College) and Oracle. Oracle now remains one of the top RDBMS sofware in the industry, mainly because of its reach and ability to convince customers of its user friendliness. 

In the free and open source software domain, we have two great RDBMSs , PostgreSQL and MySQL. MySQL was formerly powering Facebook but of late has been purchased by Oracle and to the best of my knowledge killed so that it would not be a competition to Oracle, the small commercial business package.  

RDBMSs form the basic component of any ERP package and SAP is now one of the most popular, widely used ERP software of the world. 

It makes better sense to study about any system by first having a general understanding of the system and then what are its drawbacks. The links given here are examples of failures or weaknesses of ERP packages and what could be done to overcome them.

Most of failure of ERP systems have taken place due to improper implementation.  Let us  look at what are the essential six phases of any ERP implementation.  In the Big Bang approach, the different stages of implementation are done serially and then in a big bang it is brought in line in a short period of time. This implementation process is very risky.

Organisations frequently go for the iterative approach where the implementation is done phase by phase with important departments in the organisation. The transition is slow and incremental. The advantage of this approach is that the errors in the implementation (inevitably there will be many) are progressively discovered and attended to, one at a time, so that the system does give a surprise to the organisation and keeps serving the basic interests of the customer and organisation and other stakeholders on a limited scale initially and then maturing to an advanced state later on.

Top 5 reasons why ERP implementations fail and what one can do about it .. Click here ..

A student report from UT Dallas on why ERP systems fail.. click here ..

ERP failure case at HP .. Click here ..

ICMR case on ERP Failure at HP ..

A Pemeco Consulting white paper on what led to ERP implemtation failure at Hershey's..

george..

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Jack Ma on the 3Qs of the human body and the third technology revolution ..

The Chinese business magnate Jack Ma was recently speaking at a conference where he spoke of the 3Qs of the human body.

All of us are aware of the IQ and the EQ. But how many of us are aware of the LQ - love quotient ? Jack says that it is this quotient that is going to help the world survive for the next thirty years.

The first technology revolution released the human body from the bondages of hard and heavy work and gave him leisure, free time and improved productivity.

The second technology revolution concentrated around transportation and gave the humans the ability to cover distances by automobiles, trains, planes etc..

The third technology revolution revolved around knowledge and wisdom, the developments surrounding Information Technology and its effective use have taken mankind a lot ahead. People and countries have stated competing with each other based on the knowledge they have or they can generate, not based on how they could leverage the muscles and conquer distances.

These are thoughts from a very plain headed person who is one of the top rich persons on planet earth and leading the world in e-commerce..

George ..

Monday, October 09, 2017

Business Process Re-engineering - Basics and links ..


What is a business ?

An organization or economic system where goods and services are exchanged for one another or for money. Every business requires some form of investment and enough customers to whom its output can be sold on a consistent basis in order to make a profit. Businesses can be privately owned, not-for-profit or state-owned. -www.businessdictionary.com

Business process reengineering (BPR) is the analysis and redesign of workflows within and between enterprises in order to optimize end-to-end processes and automate non-value-added tasks. - what is.com

BPR - What to do if your business is failing .. 

A good BPR FAQ .. from albany.edu ..

A World Bank BPR presentation ..

A good presentation with case studies ..


Steps and procedures in BPR .. click here ..

Click here for the Hammer article Re-engineering work, dont automate, obliterate in HBR July '90

This document has interesting links ..

Diff between BPR and Kaizen .. ( a student paper, but neatly written..)

How to make reengineering work, Hall et al, HBR, Nov '93

BPR as a quality improvement tool .


george..

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

How predictive shopping can remorph supply chain frontiers ..

Most of us by now are aware of the most common e-commerce business model of shopping-then-shipping. Once the customers makes the choice of items, the e-commerce portal would initiate operations to get the ordered items to reach the customer by accessing different databases.

With advances in Artificial Intelligence(AI) which we are advancedly witnessing in our daily lives, a day will come soon when AI would be able to predict with more than 50% probability items which we would like to purchase or are looking to purchase and the e-commerce portal would ship the items to us in advance of our placing orders. On receiving the items, the customer would favourably look up the items and select the items which he wanted to buy but never had the time or inclination to purchase. The business model now changes to shipping-then-shopping.

This idea was discussed by Prof. Ajay Agarwal and team from the Rotman School of Management, Toronto, Canada in the Oct issue of HBR. They looked at the benefits it can bring to an organisation in terms of the change in strategy it entails. But from a supply chain professional's view point, it makes more of business sense to catch the customer earlier before he goes to competitors and their products. This brings in better profitability and in the long run dedicated customer base and better customer retention.

Knowing your customers' likes and dislikes before-hand and shipping the required items to him with higher probability of acceptance, reaching anywhere near to 90% acceptability and a proportionally high profitability,(as sales are realised faster, reliably, with less costs and with less returns) would in fact be the utopia a supply chain professional would be dreaming in his organisation.

George..

Ref : 1. How AI will change strategy, a thought experiment, Ajay Agarwal et al, HBR, Oct, 2017.

How to do effective brainstorming ..

Rational left and the creative right ..
Brainstorming got a fillip after 1981 Nobel medicine laurete Dr Roger Sperry of Caltech proposed the Split Brain Theory back in the sixties, which stressed that the left hemisphere of the brain was more rational while the right hemisphere of the brain was more creative.  Click here for my blog .. The term 'brainstorming' was proposed by Alex Osborn in his 1953 book, Applied Imagination.

The latest research undertaken by Prof. Leigh Thompson of Kellogg School of Management, North western University US was very interesting.

Any brainstorming session would focus on two aspects to measure the efficacy of the output, one being the quantity of ideas generated during the session and second, the variety of ideas (flexibility) generated during the session. 

In a research on about 93 managers divided randomly into three member groups done by Leigh Thomson, members of half of these groups during the introduction session was each asked to narrate an embarrassing event in their life during the preceding six months and each of the other half group members were asked to narrate their achievements during the preceding six months. 

Leigh Thompson and her team gave ten minutes for the introduction part and ten minutes for the brainstorming. She then observed the efficacy of the brainstorming session in terms of quantity and variety of the ideas (fluency and flexibility). 

It was observed that the groups that were asked to introduce with embarrassing stories over the past six months generated 26% more ideas (fluency) spanning 15% more use categories (flexibility) than their counterparts who introduced themselves within the group with achievements over the preceding six months. 

What could be the reason for this change in group behaviour of the embarrassments narration group over the achievements narration groups. My thinking led me to come up with these few thoughts.

1. By narrating embarrassing events, the team members were more aware of their shortcomings and thus were at a lower ground of thinking to start with, which helped them generate more diverse fields ideas.
2. By narrating embarrassments and failures, the team members unconsciously did more of innovative and self-corrective thinking than the achievements narration group 
3. By narrating their embarrassing actions and at the same time listening to others' embarrassing episodes, there was more realistic evaluation of events than the achievements narration group.

I am planning to test this on my students in the class for a first hand understanding of the psychology behind this research finding.

george.

Ref : 1. Leigh Thompson, For better brainstorming, tell an embarrassing story, HBR, Oct, 2007

Was Reliance Jio introduction a BPR exercise in India ?

Business Process Reengineering is defined as the fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of business processes to ach...

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